By Joel Hillan

HUDSON, Colo. (CBS4)– The Colorado State Patrol says so far this year 160 people have died in car accidents so far this year, about half of those killed were not wearing their seat belts.

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Amy Regalado, Chef and General Manager of the Pepper Pod is encouraging the community to come together for each other and buckle-up.

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“I grew up here and I can’t tell you from the time I was a little, little girl until just a couple of weeks ago how many customers I have known who have died in traffic accidents,” said Regalado.

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Her family has run this establishment just off Interstate 76 in Hudson for over 40 years.

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“Their family members come in the door because we are the social hub of this county, they come in here to grieve and almost all of them, they say they weren’t wearing a seat belt,” she said.

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Amy remembers clearly that foggy morning in February when Sheila, Jaxon and Kassidy Sinclair were killed in a crash in Fort Lupton. Not one of the three were wearing their seat belts.

Jaxon Sinclair (L), Sheila Sinclair (Center) and Kassidy Sinclair (R). (credit: CBS)

“Your life is worth the two seconds it takes to reach over your shoulder and buckle your seat belt,” said Colonel Matthew Packard, Chief of the Colorado State Patrol.

Colonel Matthew Packard, Chief of the Colorado State Patrol (credit: CBS)

“I will guarantee you if a Colorado State Patrol Trooper stops you today, tomorrow or the next week or the day after that or the month after that… expect a ticket,” said Packard.

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CSP is encouraging all of us to take the pledge to wear our seat belts. You can do that on social media using #StopTheReaper.

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Joel Hillan anchors CBS4 This Morning on weekends as well as reports stories for CBS4 News at 5 and 6 p.m. Follow Joel on Twitter @joelhillan.